As every day passes, I am amazed at how my progress with my credit repair continues to show me why having good credit pays off.
Since I’ve started and continued my credit repair journey, the credit offers I’ve been receiving and been approved for keep getting better and better. I haven’t reached American Express Centurion status yet, but my latest credit card approval is just an entryway to working harder to snag that invitation. The Chase Sapphire Reserve credit card has been the latest tool in my wallet that has helped my husband and I take a trip to Los Angeles, CA for little to nothing. The benefits for the Chase Sapphire Reserve credit card include bonus points when a spending limit is reached, travel credit, deep discounts on car rentals and rewards partner transfers just to name a few. With the few mentioned benefits, here’s how we were able to capitalize after we met the spending limit to receive out 100,000 bonus points.
The first thing we had to do was book a flight to LAX. This was relatively simple. I have a secret bag of tricks, tips, and tools that I love to use when I am planning a trip. We were able to book a ROUNDTRIP flight on JetBlue, nonstop to LAX for $302.50. Guess how much our travel credit was worth? You guessed it; $300. So, relatively, we paid $2.50 to get to LA and back.
Next thing on the list was to book a hotel. Now here’s our just with hotels. When my husband and I go out of town, we don’t put much emphasis on our hotel because we’re barely in the room. We will literally pack a bag with a few extra clothes for weather changes or dress code compliance if we go somewhere, and head out into the city of the day. We don’t get back to the hotel until the wee hours of the night. SO why spend all that money on something we won’t be in. Now that doesn’t mean we stay in rinky-dink places. Oh no! However, we make sure to stay with reputable brands so we know what we’re dealing with. We stayed at the Hyatt Place Hotel in El Segundo. Close to the airport and five minutes away from the beautiful Manhattan Beach area.
This was our first time staying and booking a Hyatt property, and we weren’t disappointed. We had all the necessities needed; the staff members were super helpful, the property had a nice outdoor pool area, sitting area with an amazing fireplace, and a well-equipped gym to get my workout on. We booked the room for 4 days and it only cost us 48,000 Chase Ultimate Reward points. THAT’S IT! Now the Ultimate Rewards portal does offer discounts for cardholders, however, when I did the math, it was much more cost and point effective to do a points transfer to my World of Hyatt account, and book the room that way. If I booked the room through the portal, it would cost me 59, 517 points.
Now when I looked into booking directly on Hyatt’s website, the cost was only 48,000 with a points purchase. Thankfully, Hyatt is an Ultimate Rewards partner which means it’s very easy to transfer points into my loyalty account and book a reservation, and the points transfer is instant. Once I logged into my World of Hyatt account, the points were there for my booking, and my room was secured.
Now the last thing left on the list was to book a car. Sapphire Reserve cardholders get access to discounted rental rates and memberships through National, Avis, and Silvercar. While comparing all three companies, Avis came up with the better deal. So I signed up for Avis Preferred, which is included with the card, and made a reservation to book a car. A full-size car from LAX Airport for 4 days cost us nothing but $123 with taxes and fees. Absolutely crazy deal.
So now let’s do some math here and compare
Expense without the Sapphire Reserve Expenses with the Sapphire Reserve
Flight – $302.50 Flight – $2.50
Hotel – $892.76 Hotel – $0.00 (paid with points)
Car Rental – $186.00 Car Rental – $123.17
Total – $1380.76 Total – $125.67
When I realized the amount of money I was saving on travel by simply “adulting” and paying my bills on time, credit card included, it gave me more motivation to continue the work I’ve been doing with my credit repair. DIY credit repair is available to anyone who wants to do it, but it’s not for the impatient. DIY credit repair will take time and lots of patience, but the rewards and lessons gained throughout the journey are priceless.